Saturday, May 3, 2014

Day 123- A Limb First

Today I was walking outside and notice a dead limb hanging down from one of the pine trees.  I thought that limb probably needs to come down. However, it was much higher than I could reach. Then,  a thought hit me; I wonder if I could shoot that limb down with my .22 rifle?  It is the year of "firsts" so why not give it a try. I asked Joel about the idea and he was all for it. I tried to shoot a dead limb out of a tree for my "first."

Dead limb hanging

Too high to use a saw

Still hanging
I went out and started shooting.  Chips of dead wood were flying around.  After 6 or 7 shots, it was still hanging on.  I was not sure if this was going to work or not.  A .22 is not a very big bullet.  I didn't want to shoot 100 bullets at it or some amount like that.  I kept shooting.  Sure enough, after about 10-15 shots, down it comes.  Joel yelled, "You got it."

 Down it comes
Pretty nice limb, but not exactly something you want to mount or eat 

Sometimes there are dead things that just need to go.  When I saw that limb, I thought that it just needed to come down before it fell on someone.  Not a likely scenario given it was going to fall into the azalea bush, but it sounded like a good reason to shoot it down. You never know where your 9 year old boy will be playing.

Do you have any dead wood hanging on? Here is what Jesus said in John 15:2: "Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit."  There are times in our lives when the Father needs to prune us.   Pruning is when God cuts away some things in our lives so that we can bear more fruit.  More fruit glorifies God more than just a little fruit.  When God prunes us, it is not just sin that He is cutting away though He certainly wants the sin gone from our lives.  He cuts away the dead wood; those things that keep us from bearing more fruit.  Many times the pruning is not just for the things that are necessarily wrong, but the things that are keeping us from bearing more fruit for Jesus. He might prune things like time-wasters, unworthy thoughts, hobbies that take up too much time, and things like that. One person said that the enemy of the best if often the good.  It is easy to let good things substitute for the best things.  If God is pruning, let Him prune. It just means more fruit.

Here's a way I think of it.  It is easy for electronics and electronic games to take up a lot of a person's time.  If God prunes that (convicts you to cut that time back or cut it out all together), I don't think at the end of my life I'll be sad that I had more time to spend with my Lord or my family but did not reach level 300 on Candy Crush.  The fruit God has is much better than what He prunes away.

Being pruned for the abundant life

3 things I thank God for today
1. White fluffy clouds
2. The fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5: 22-23)
3. Bible on electronic devices

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